FTheory/Cosmology: How Anomalous are Cosmic Microwave Background Anomalies?
The microwave background full-sky temperature maps from WMAP and Planck display several unusual features on large scales, including a hemispherical power asymmetry, a suppressed angular correlation function, a large Integrated Sachs-Wolfe signal associated with superstructures and voids, and a power modulation between even and odd multipole moments. Often these are dismissed as statistical flukes. Buy any of them might also point to a fundamental shortcoming of the standard cosmological model on large scales. I will give a brief review o the various effects, show some recent results on their statistical significance, and discuss further probes which have the potential either to weaken or strengthen the hypothesis that they are statistical flukes. Possible implications of physics beyond the standard cosmological model will be briefly considered.